Queensland’s first junior blind golf champion Joshua Woods is now gaining international recognition – not for his ability on the golf course, but for his commitment to something most of us would never aspire to – brokering world peace.
13-year-old Joshua Wood from Brisbane has won the The Lions International Peace Essay Contest.
The Lions International Peace Essay Contest gives young people with visual impairments an opportunity to contribute to world peace by penning their thoughts on how to make the world a better place.
Josh authored a breathtakingly powerful essay that identified compassion, humility and selfless dedication to the service of others as being the cornerstone of peace in an ever-changing world.
In a moving tribute, Josh immortalised his Grandfather who he credits with his realisation that by doing good to others, one can achieve self peace, and through the attainment of personal inner-harmony each individual can make the world a better place.
Judging is based on originality, organization and expression of the theme. This year’s theme was “Peace Through Service”.
The announcement was made as part of Lions Day with the United Nations.
Joshua is not only a talented writer, but also a keen golfer and member of Blind Golf Queensland. Joshua won the inaugural Junior’s division at the 2020 Queensland Blind Golf Open held at RACV Royal Pines on the Gold Coast.
Joshua is also a member of the Queensland Blind Golf juniors squad.
“Blind Golf Queensland members are so happy for Joshua Wood’s achievement in winning the Major Award for Lions International Peace Essay competition,” said club secretary, Neil Herdegen.
“After witnessing Joshua’s continued successes and improvement on the golf course, we’re thrilled to see him putting his efforts towards such a noble endeavour.
“In fact, it’s difficult to think of a more worthy endeavour.
“He puts us all to shame – while we’re worried about curing our dreaded driver slice and trying to putt straight, Josh is bringing peace to the World.”
Joshua hopes his essay encourages others to help people despite any disabilities or difficulties they face.
“I was born with a rare retinal condition and use braille to read,” said Joshua. “I would like others to know that even if you have a disability, you can still achieve great things and be a positive influence on other people.”
“The Peace Essay is important because it encourages people to not only think about peace but also how to achieve it,” said Joshua. “I would love to live in a more peaceful world and for people to find inner peace. I believe many problems and disputes can be solved with a more peaceful approach, whereby people think of others as well as themselves. With more patience, kindness and a willingness to help others, I believe we can achieve a more peaceful society.”
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner also was keen to congratulate Queensland’s first junior blind golf champion.
“What Joshua has achieved is not only extraordinary for Brisbane and our nation, but is also empowering visually-impaired young people across the world to strive for peace,” Cr Schrinner said.
Joshua also appeared on ABC Radio. The interview with Josh and his proud mum Jenny is here: